You Can Manage Stress through Social Support

Make sure you are connected to a close network of family and friends who will support you emotionally and love you unconditionally.  The simple act of talking face to face with another human being can release hormones that reduce stress even when the sufferer is unable to alter the stressful situation.  Opening up to someone is not a sign of weakness and it does not make the individual a burden to others.  Most first responders, about 52%, tell us that they are emotionally supported by a close network of family and friends.

A friend is someone you trust and share a deep level of understanding and communication. A good friend will show a genuine interest in what's going on in your life, what you have to say, and how you think and feel about things; accept you for who you are; and listen to you attentively without judging you, telling you how to think or feel, or trying to change the subject.  Make sure you find someone in your network of family and friends that you can trust enough to confide in.  It will strengthen the bond you have with one another, and it will often lessen the likelihood that you may need some more serious type of intervention in the future.

How does having a strong social support network show up in your life?

  • You become thankful for the presence of the important people in your network, and find joy in hearing their words of encouragement and praise
  • You realize that there are times when you come up short, but your closest family and friends never give up on you
  • When you feel like giving up, your support network continues to push you to be the best version of yourself, and to live out the virtues that will take you where you want to be

Here’s something else that’s right on point:  Research tells us that the number one most important factor of human resilience is social support!

Self-Reflection Questions:

  1. When was the last time I called a member of my social support network to thank them?
  2. How has the love and support of my network changed the course of my life?
  3. What can I do – today – to show my close family and friends that I appreciate them?

If you’d like to speak to one of our peer support specialists about how to manage the stress of work or life in general, feel free to reach out to us at and someone will be happy to chat with you.  If you are in crisis, please text the keyword BADGE to the National Crisis Text Line where you can be connected to a trained crisis counselor, 24/7/365.  Always free.  Always confidential.

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